My favorite moment of the Mad Men finale, and probably of the show in its entirety, was over within the first minute of last night’s episode. It was the perfect farewell to the Don Draper that went unnoticed by most, but that you and I knew as a member of our family: Don Draper, the secret gearhead.
I firmly believe that Mad Men held some of the greatest automotive moments on modern TV. They were subtle, done in a way that wouldn’t distract the un-knowledgeable viewer. Nor did they rely on tired sixties tropes or muscle car cliches. They were exquisitely researched nods to car culture’s golden era, hidden in plain sight, detectable only to the knowing eye.
I’m being coy here, in part, because there are some small but significant spoilers in my column over at Road & Track. If you’re fully caught up with the Mad Men finale, and you’ve said your final farewell to Don, come see what I’m talking about.